Ben Haggerty. That's how we know him here in Seattle. The rest of the world knows him as Macklemore, a multi-platinum, multi-Grammy Award winning, globe-touring rap artist. His second solo album, GEMINI, was released this past September. Lucky for us, he took a bit of time to help out with some socks...
Here at Arvin Goods we think of ourselves as a #friendofthepeople. That means we use our brand and industry position to make the right changes happen. That’s exactly what makes us dig Ben Haggerty so much. Like us, he isn’t afraid to use his brand, status, and voice (literally) to work towards solutions for the issues that matter.
Take a listen to his music, give his videos a watch — topics like social justice, racism, marriage equality, addiction, and recovery come up frequently. Earlier songs like “Same Love” and “White Privilege II” reflect his willingness to speak to subjects at once personal, political, and universal. On top of that, when not performing, Haggerty attends recovery meetings for himself and in support of friends, and visits places like Seattle Children's Hospital whenever he can. So, yeah — we'd definitely call him a real #friendofthepeople
The first time I saw Macklemore perform was in 2004 or 2005, in a small club called Chop Suey in the Capitol Hill neighborhood of Seattle. There were maybe 100 people in the room. The space was buzzing with the kind of energy that exists only at small shows for fresh acts. Fast forward to the 2012 release of The Heist, Macklemore’s first of two albums with producer Ryan Lewis. Over 8,000 people came to see him perform, and he now plays to crowds as big as 50,000 or more. We call that progress!
GEMINI is a 16-song album that really seems to be all about people — the social collective, fans, the band, other musicians, Haggerty’s family, and Ben himself. Songs range from nostalgic tracks about Macklemore’s humble beginnings (“Good Old Days”) to beats charged with hope for the future (“Ain’t Gonna Die Tonight” and “Church”). A number of the songs focus on Haggerty’s newest role, as a father. His daughter is mentioned throughout the album (she's also a popular figure on his Instagram page).
It means a lot to us that both Ben and his wife, Tricia, are aware of the damaging effects of clothing production. They acknowledge that the touring music industry produces a lot of product and, by extension, a lot of waste. When I explained Arvin Goods mission and goals to Ben and Tricia last year, they immediately became involved with our Kickstarter campaign.
The result is the traditional Arvin Goods Gym Sock featuring the “GEMINI ” text in album colors — a simple shout-out to the artist and listeners to be a #friendofthepeople, and to “give it to the people/Spread it across the country…”
We don't tip-toe around it — this is a super special sock to us. But like all great things, supplies are limited: we only produced 500 pairs in each color. There could be more in the future, but no promises. You can ONLY get your hands on these socks at macklemoremerch.com or at one of his upcoming live shows on the world wide GEMINI tour. I just saw his Seattle homecoming show at Key Arena (I was wearing my GEMINI socks ;-) ) trust me you don't want to miss this show! Get them now!